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The World Health Organization unanimously voted to recognize compulsive gaming, or ‘gaming disorder,’ as an official disease at its 25th annual general meeting, taking place this weekend in Geneva, Switzerland.
Video Games Chronicle reports that gaming disorder will now be included in the International Classification of Diseases, which is used internationally by healthcare professionals and insurers.
The definition of gaming disorder has remained more or less the same since the WHO introduced it as a mental health disorder last year. The disease is characterized as “impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities,” and that those afflicted with the condition will continue to play games despite experiencing negative life consequences as a result.
In other words, if you miss work and get fired because you stayed up all night playing a game that just launched, you may have an addiction problem, according to the WHO. To qualify as a gaming disorder under the new guidelines, this kind of behaviour must persist for at least 12 months.
Arma III is a highly realistic military simulation that focuses on managing the minutiae of the battlefield. Halo: The Master Chief Collection, on the other hand, is a first-person sci-fi romp across alien worlds, in which you play as the almost godlike Master Chief. The only thing the pair of games have in common is that they’re both shooters, but a group of modders has somehow managed to bring them together.
Operation: Trebuchet is a total overhaul mod for Arma III that takes the game from its realistic roots and turns it into a Halo game. Check out the cinematic trailer further down this article - the scope of the mod is frankly astounding.
According to the mod’s page on the Steam Workshop, Trebuchet “focuses on the struggles of the common soldier rather than the elite spartan warriors, allowing you to experience the Halo universe from a unique, brutal perspective.” The total overhaul mod adds custom Halo UI, as well as some of the series’ iconic vehicles.
Nate Nanzer, the commissioner of Blizzard’s Overwatch League, has announced he is leaving the position. He will take on a position with Epic Games overseeing competitive Fortnite at Epic Games.
Friday, Nanzer took to Twitter to announce his departure from the Overwatch League and from Blizzard.
“I wanted to share that soon I will be leaving Blizzard for a new opportunity,” Nanzer said. “This has been the toughest decision of my life, because it means I won’t get to work with the best staff, players, teams, owners, partners, and fans in esports anymore.”
Nanzer said he was proud of what he’s seen the Overwatch League accomplish over the course of his tenure as commissioner, a position he’s held since the formation of the OWL in 2016.
“I get way too much credit for the success of the Overwatch League,” Nanzer continued in his good-bye Twitter thread. “It’s been awesome to be our public face, but too many overestimate my role in making the league great. It isn’t about me; it’s never been. It’s about all of you.”
“That’s why I’m confident the league is in great hands,” he said. “I can’t wait to see where the team takes the Overwatch League in 2020 - and beyond. And I’ll be cheering right there alongside you, every step of the way.”
May 25, 2019 NetherRealm has pushed out a patch that gives Mortal Kombat 11 players the option to raise the framerate to 60 fps in menus, cinematics, and the Krypt.
Certain elements of Mortal Kombat 11 were originally capped at 30 frames per second, meaning you lose the silky smooth 60 fps look during some of its more spectacular moments, such as fatalities and final blows.
The areas where Mortal Kombat 11 was capped to 30 fps are the aforementioned animation sequences and Krypt mode, in which you explore a maze-like dungeon in search of chests containing extra loot, new fatalities, and new characters.
In the patch notes for a previous update, the developers write: “Additionally, on the topic of having the certain parts of the game run with a framerate cap of 30 FPS, we hear you. We’re currently working on providing the option to increase the caps in those areas to 60 FPS. We’ll have more details soon, stay tuned!”
Now, a new patch has added in the option to raise the cap to 60 fps in menus and cinematics, as well as a separate option to increase framerate in the Krypt to 60 fps. The first option, for menus and cinematics, is now set by default to 60 fps, but players will have to enable the increased framerate cap in the Krypt. NetherRealm says this is only recommended for high-end systems.
One of the next major chapters coming to Warframe is the New War, a cinematic quest series which, if I have it right, involves your long-time guide the Lotus returning to the ominous Sentients to prepare to wage war on the Tenno. However the quest plays out, it will involve traveling to a Sentient-themed sector, and Digital Extremes has provided a peek at what that’s going to look like.
In short, it’s metal as hell. In this week’s developer stream, Digitial Extremes showed off some of the Sentient concept art, we see the remains of smashed capital ships or space stations, derelicts that are fused with long-dead organic matter, but held together with angry red energy.
But the Digital Extremes team went a bit beyond concept art. Since The New War is taking longer than expected to develop, they decided to show off one of the areas in-game, although still very much in a work-in-progress state.
That clip is below, but be warned: if you don’t want to get spoiled on any of The New War content, you probably want to skip this one.
It’s no surprise that Borderlands 3 will have a significant presence at this year’s E3 - with a release date set for this fall, it stands to reason Gearbox would want to hype up the game at the year’s biggest trade show. Beyond that, it’s published some very detailed cosplay guides with an eye to kicking off a global Borderlands 3 cosplay tour at E3.
Now, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford says fans can look forward to seeing some new game content at the show as well, including a new vault hunter, a new planet, and more.
“Borderlands fans have a lot to look forward to at E3,” Pitchford tweeted Friday afternoon. He said show attendees will have a chance to play Borderlands 3 at the 2K booth, and that Gearbox would be revealing a new vault hunter and a new planet as well.
“We may even have a surprise or two up our sleeves… EXCITED!” he said.
What that surprise - or surprises - might be is anyone’s guess, but a new vault hunter is pretty exciting, given how these tend to become important characters in the Borderlands universe.
Bungie has taken Destiny 2 independent, and now the game’s PC launcher has been updated to reflect that. The latest Battle.net update proudly displays that the game is “developed by Bungie” and “published by Bungie.” Additionally, the client has renamed the “Activision” section to “partner games.”
Whether that means other non-Activision games might come to Battle.net in the future remains to be seen, though the changes leave the door open. Back when Bungie and Activision announced the Destiny split, the plan was - and still is - to have the game supported on Battle.net. We don’t know if Destiny 2 will end up on other PC platforms, but it’s a safe bet that Destiny 3 will.
We also have to question how many further Activision releases will hit PC via Battle.net. Destiny 2 started the experiment, and Black Ops 4 was exclusive to the platform on PC, but it’s not even an option for the recent release of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.
The latest Overwatch PTR has brought some new features big enough to overshadow the balance changes, but there’s a McCree buff in there that players are starting to take notice of. The gunslingers has gotten a small boost to his fire recovery time, but it’s a bigger deal than it appears - even if it’s not quite as flashy as the new replay feature.
McCree’s primary fire recovery time has been reduced from 0.5 seconds to 0.4 seconds. In the developer comments, Blizzard says “On average, McCree’s damage output wasn’t quite making up for the relatively low mobility or utility in his kit. Reducing his weapon’s recovery time improves the potential damage output without affecting the number of successful shots to kill an enemy.”
That fraction of a second might not seem like much, but as Dexerto notes, players soon found the difference obvious - the comparison GIFs are night and day. If you actually look at the numbers, like the folks on Reddit did, it makes more sense. That slight boost in recovery time means McCree’s DPS has increased from 140 to 175 (not accounting for reloads).
Steam sales have historically been a reason to extend your backlog, but Valve tried something different last year with the Spring Cleaning Event - a bit of encouragement for users to play the games they already own.
It doesn’t have quite the same ring as the chance to buy dozens of games for a handful of dollars (you can keep counting the days to the Steam Summer sale 2019 for that), but it does let you feel slightly less guilty about all the times you’ve done it in the past. The event presents you with daily tasks to gamify your gaming.
Completing tasks will level you up, get you new badges, and let you earn new trophies. One task has you play a randomly-selected game from your library. Another asks you to play games you haven’t previously launched. Yet another asks you to try one of the titles running a free weekend for the event. Free games include Dead By Daylight, Endless Space 2, Assetto Corsa, Grim Dawn, Don’t Starve Together, Black Desert Online, and Left 4 Dead 2.
Apex Legends had a staggering launch that put it on top in just about every metric that can measure a game’s success. But that momentum has slowed over just a few months, and the game’s revenue has slipped to match. Respawn’s battle royale is only making a quarter of what it did back in February - a big dip from the best launch in free-to-play history.
The game made $24 million in April, as SuperData reports (via Eurogamer). That’s no small amount of money, but it is a massive dip from the game’s launch revenue of $92 million. A 74% dip in revenue over the space of two months is certainly cause for concern, especially given what it likely means for the Apex Legends player count - over 50 million, at one point.
Apex Legends is by no means dead, but its position as a Fortnite-killer is looking much more uncertain. The game’s updates haven’t been as frequent as Fortnite’s, and the new content that has launched - like the Apex Legends battle pass - hasn’t been super well-received by the community.